The microwave was a revolutionary creation that allowed people to heat up their food quickly. Now, there is an invention that reverses this process and is called Frigondas. It is able to freeze food and drinks in minutes along with the capabilities of a traditional microwave. The microwave is designed to be easy and simple for everyone to use so that it “compliments” the kitchen. The article does not give much on how this product incorporates IoT, but I felt that it is a worthy innovation that can one day revolutionize households the same way traditional microwaves already have. According to the article, this product should be hitting the US market very soon. How do you guys feel about this? Do you find this fascinating? Why, why not? Is an invention like this something you see yourself using in the future?
Cambridge Analytica is a political consulting firm that gained access to data on over 50 million Facebook users. Although the news of this has just surfaced, Facebook has known about this since 2015. There was no hacking or illegal methods involved as Cambridge collected this data. Public trust in Facebook’s ability to keep data safe is obviously at an all time low, and the business side of things is feeling that effect. Facebook lost about $75 billion in market capitalization and shares have fallen 13.9% since the story broke. Elon Musk took action by deleting the Facebook pages of his Tesla and SpaceX companies. Now there are serious talks about government oversight and regulation, something Facebook has been able to escape throughout its lifespan. Even Mark Zuckerberg has been quoted in this article saying regulations may be the way to go.
Do you think government regulation in technology is necessary/needed? How would regulations change the business environment for tech companies whose core business lies with data collection?
Do you believe Facebook will overcome this? Does Facebook hold too much power over its users? Why would Facebook hold this information from the public for three years, including a presidential election?
Imagine a hotel room that caters to your every demand just by simply asking. Marriott Hotels is creating smart hotel rooms that offer a wide variety of “smart” capabilities to enhance the experience of staying at one of their locations. The rooms respond to verbal commands and can perform functions such as open the drapes, turn on/off the lights, display personal chosen photos on the walls, and offer restaurant suggestions depending on your preference and mood. These rooms collect and store data to be analyzed and used to improve these smart rooms in the future. Allowing the rooms to utilize your personal data raises severe security concerns. While these rooms sound like a positive experience, they invade your personal privacy, such as knowing your exact current location through a connected smartphone. While Marriott states they have security measures in place to prevent the leak of customer information, the question arises, are these conveniences worth the risk?
Meet Harmony, the world’s first talking sex robot, created by Matt McMullen who is the CEO and creative director of Realbotix. For the past 20 years, McMullen has been making silicone sex dolls but has now moved into the world of technologically-advanced sex robots. By all accounts, Harmony is an incredibly human-like robot, with facial features that can replicate normal facial expressions. She can raise her eyebrows, dip her chin, move her eyes, and more. Her figure is a life-like replica of a woman’s. And, if buyers want to “customize” Harmony, they most certainly can—her body style, skin tone, hair color, eye color, breast size, freckles, and more are all customizable. She even comes in fantasy versions, where the manufacturers can add on elf ears or vampire fangs. Once she is fully complete, she is sent to buyers in 12 weeks for a price tag of $4,000 – $6,000.
“Harmony is a sophisticated piece of machinery and her primary design is to carry on conversations,” says McMullen. When Harmony is turned on to chat mode, her face motor and Bluetooth-powered speaker allow her to chat with you. She is programmed to recognize her owner’s voice, and can say that she has missed them, or even tell a joke. Harmony comes with an AI app where the owner can adjust her personality (shy, sensual, funny, talkative), mood, level of desire, voice style, and regional accent (a Scottish accent was mentioned in the article).
Harmony has come under a lot of scrutiny. Many argue that owning sex robots like Harmony could increase objectification and violence towards women. Others argue that, once Harmony’s app is hacked, she could be controlled to kill her owner. McMullen typically rejects these arguments, although he has programmed Harmony to “end any conversation that involves murder or violence.” And despite the backlash, McMullen wants to move forward with constant updates to Harmony—including adding video cameras behind her eyes that can track the owner around the room.
What do you think about Harmony? Do you think she serves a need, or just plain old freaks you out?
What is the future of wearable Technology?
Apple watches, fitbits, step trackers, what is the future of where we are going with wearable technology?
This article makes a wonderful point as to where we are in relation to what the future, may hold in terms of wearable tech. To paraphrase, in accordance with Moore’s Law, as time continues technology will continue to shrink in size and become more powerful. Therefore, currently, we are wearing what would be equivalent to a boom box on our wrists.
Interesting take. That being said, watches always are larger, so I disagree there. But, the point that the article was making was that technology is continuing to be woven into everything more seamlessly every day. As a society, we are becoming more and more obsessed with numbers and quantifiable data. Because of this, we cannot settle for estimations.
Now, imagine if wearable tech is interwoven into everything. That ring on your fingers, inlaid with tech to sense your vitals and hydration. Your shirt and pants have advanced fabrics that indicate certain organs and body parts are functioning correctly.
It seems overwhelming, but it may be where we are headed. This comes from the notion that, as an advanced society, we are focusing on integrating tech and simplifying every interaction we have throughout our days. The article talks about if you were coming home with bags of groceries, the wearable will sense that, talk to your ‘smart’ door which will then unlock and open for you. If you have low hydration levels, your ‘smart’ refrigerator will pour a glass of water for you as you enter the kitchen.
The future seems exciting in terms of integration. If we are going lengths to do so already it will be great to see the final product.
McDonald’s has been investing in new technology that will change the customer experience and put a lot of McDonald workers out of the job. The digital platform will change ordering by implementing self-service kiosks. While McDonald’s executives were excited about the new changes made, day-to-day workers were less then enthused. Dickerson, a McDonald’s employee, voiced his concerned saying “They added a lot of complicated things,” Dickerson said in an interview. “It makes it harder for the workers.” Turnover in fast food chains have jumped to 150%. The article states that employees constantly switch off between old fashion ordering and the new platform. McDonald’s ordering has gotten 30 seconds slower from 2016.
In MIS 4596, we constantly talk about how automation is the future and will save company’s hundreds of thousands of dollars. I think a large part of the implementation process that many people tend to ignore is getting employees involved and excited about the technology that will be implemented. If the employees are not excited/on broad about the technology being implemented than the company could lose more then they gain. What are your thoughts on how McDonald’s implemented new kiosks? What do you think McDonald’s could have done better so their employees embraced the new technology?
Patton, L. (2018, March 13). McDonald’s Tech Features Are Pushing Human Workers Out the Door. Retrieved March 13, 2018, from https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2018-03-13/worker-exodus-builds-at-mcdonald-s-as-mobile-app-sows-confusion
You may not think of a farm as a place where technology can be leveraged effectively. However, IoT on the farm through smart tractors and other farming equipment can help tech-savvy farmers plant and harvest more efficiently than ever. These devices can provide farmers advice on where, when, and how much to plant and fertilize. Unfortunately, according to a recent article by Rian Wanstreet at Motherboard, many issues with far-reaching implications have arisen between farmers and Big Agriculture equipment manufacturers.
According to the article, incredibly restrictive End User Licensing Agreements deliver control of the IoT devices and the big data they generate, to the manufacturers instead of the farmers that depend on the data to make important and timely decisions. These EULAs not only restrict farmers’ access to the data their farms generate, but also heavily restrict how and where farmers can handle their devices themselves.
Big data and IoT is certainly valuable, but the struggle for control and ownership of that data is raising complex problems that can have implications stretching across industries and even into our homes as IoT and similar technologies become more common.
Beijing police are testing out a new security tool, facial recognition glasses, that can identify facial features and car registration plates within milliseconds and match them in real-time with a database of suspects.These AI-powered glasses were built by LLVision Technology Company. They scan the faces of people in the vehicle and the license plates, catching suspects and people traveling under false identities then flagging a red box and a warning sign to the police when a match is found in the “blacklist”. It’s powered by a system called Skynet which is a national database of blacklisted people and is controlled by a connected mobile unit. These sunglasses have been tested and used as extra security for the annual meeting of China’s parliament to extend Xi Jinping’s presidency. The Chinese government has a list of people who are not to be at the meeting and could face additional enforcement actions if they are in attendance. This blacklist includes criminals, journalists, lawyers, political dissidents and more.
The glasses have only been previously tested in Zhengzhou train stations and police are said to have caught seven suspects and 26 travelers using false identities in one day. China leaders are pushing to leverage technology in order to boost security in the country. Surveillance and facial recognition technology are currently on the rise in China with there being 170 million surveillance cameras. The government is looking to triple that number in the next 2 years, eventually being able to identify a person within 3 seconds. Many people are worried about the infringement of privacy and human rights with the high number of surveillance cameras and new facial recognition technologies.
Wu Fei, CEO of LLVision, says people should not be worried about privacy concerns because China authorities use the AI-powered equipment for “noble causes”. What do you think, are citizens privacy being invaded? To what extent do you believe that the facial recognition glasses are producing accurate data? Do you think this is something the US could potentially invest in?
Kuri is an interesting home robot designed by Mayfield Robotics, a Bosch-owned startup. It is not just functional, but like a virtual member of your family. It responds to voice input and responds with light, robot noises and blinking motions. It can capture moments of life automatically, play music and podcasts wherever you are in the house and have fun with your kids. It learns fast of your home’s floor plan and know which room belongs to whom. It can wake you up in time for work and greet you when you come home. It will patrol the halls and record moments when hearing sounds, like your housekeeper that make your home secure and let you check on your pets when you are away.
Do you feel like you need a robot acts like Kuri? Do you think having a robot at home is useful or annoying?
Retrieved from https://www.cnet.com/products/mayfield-robotics-kuri/preview/
The one thing that we use every day that hasn’t received a technology upgrade is your front door. New start-ups and big e-commerce giants are trying to change that. We are in the age of on-demand delivery, service providers are looking to leverage technological innovation with doors.
Just recently Amazon acquired Ring, a smart doorbell developer, for $1.1 billion. The smart locks are attached to camera systems. For Amazon’s goal is to repurpose and leverage this to enable in-home deliveries to customers who don’t want their packages sitting outside. There could be many commercial applications with new front door tech. Such as Airbnb or renters can manage access to home with tech as opposed to having to physically give and take keys. Service providers such as cleaners, plumbers, or installers can leverage this tech also.
- What kind of compliance/agreement would you require before using front door tech?
- What else can front door tech be used for?
- What other areas of our lives/homes with become smarter?